Photography © Jennifer Matthews



fronds vibrating at the top of a palm
the old industrial quay is empty
the bits are rusted
the pavement is cracked
clouds rising from the shallow
water in the middle of the island
stack on a candy colored sky
if every few years i stomp
back and forth on these roads
looking for things i misplaced
i’ll arrive close enough to here to justify it
whether or not we’re ever ready to go
Calabash is going to be fine
Ana is going to be fine
i’m going to be really tired
until we’re under way and i sleep through all Zoli’s watches
i’ll be fine
my water bottle was at the liquor store
the girl behind the counter knew i was coming back for it
i know i remember her from when i was here on Tosen
she smiles and i feel at home


head banger

under way at night
in the wind
at the drumkit of the universe
with both hands on the wheel
holding your desired course
hammering the om


making coffee

queen of myriad
confusing brilliant things
my boat is a portal
life may be about the people you share it with
but my boat opens doors


grinning and driving

a setting sun printed on my vision
in orange rows on black horizons
over the dark skin of the sea i swing my head
carrying the projection of suns over it like a screen
the ocean has mellowed out
my hunger is back
so are my eyes


six knots of wind is good enough

big oceans
little islands
prisms and prisons
fish flapping out of clean water
drinking coffee
i don’t want to be tired
feel like i owe
a little something to everybody
i’m trying


off watch

rainbows until my glasses are caked with salt
between us and the jib when waves blow apart
water running inside
the heavy rubber gloves is traveling up my arms
with his bibs open at his waist
Michael looks comfortable in the cockpit
there was water on the cabin sole
running in from an old drain
i put my foot in it while i was changing my pants
now the boots aren’t doing what they did


after working on a Sunday and rowing back out to the boat on its anchor

exhausted and stupid
sunburnt and regretful
dragged the boat out of the lagoon last night
back in the cove this morning
heavy blanket of wind keeps the sun from feeling hot
when i got up this morning i had a bunch of plans
now i can stay perfectly still and satisfy everything


Harry Ricciardi is a carpenter that likes poems.

Poet/Photographer Jennifer Matthews’ poetry has been published in Nepal by Pen Himalaya and locally by the Wilderness Retreat Writers Organization, Midway Journal, The Somerville Times, Ibbetson Street Press and Boston Girl Guide. Jennifer was nominated for a poetry award by the Cambridge Arts Council for her book of Poetry Fairy Tales and Misdemeanors. Her songs have been released nationally and internationally and her photography has been used as covers for a number of Ibbetson Street Press poetry books and has been exhibited at The Middle East Restaurant, 1369 Coffeehouses, Sound Bites Restaurant in Somerville and McLean Hospital.